How to Increase Your Mental Fitness

Have you ever noticed you don’t feel quite as mentally sharp when you do the same mundane things day in and day out? This is actually physically true. If you use your brain for new tasks, it gets sharper.

Our brains have an ability to actually change structure and physiology in response to new stimuli and challenges. To give your mind this kind of food for growth, try some of the suggestions below.

1. Play mental games. Crosswords, brain teasers, mazes, Sudoku, and other puzzles are all effective ways to challenge your mind. So try something new and really give your brain a workout. Even the occasional video game has something to offer.

• These are especially good if they’re new experiences for you. Someone just beginning crossword puzzles is going to experience more improvement in mental fitness than someone that has been doing them for years.

2. Exercise regularly. Moving your body during exercise accomplishes many things:

  • • The brain is forced to send stronger impulses to your muscles when moving vigorously or against resistance.
  • • The coordination required and the use of muscles not normally used both challenge the brain.
  • • The flow of blood and nutrients through the brain is increased.

3. Play music. Learning a new musical instrument is a great way to challenge your mental fitness. This is particularly true for someone who has never played a musical instrument.

• Learning musical theory is like learning a new language. Not only is music an enjoyable way to spend free time, but it’s also great for your brain. Now might be the perfect time to pull out the phone book and look into piano or violin lessons.
4. Meditate your way to mental fitness. Meditation challenges your brain by creating a new mental state. It’s relaxing, plus it teaches your mind the ability to focus, which is a huge task for many of us. Meditation is a great way to improve mental fitness.

5. Read something new every day. Reading is a complicated mental process that requires processing information quickly. Try reading something new that interests you. You’ll get the added benefit of novelty, enhance your brain function, and learn something as well.
6. Challenge your memory. Each day, take a minute and try to remember the previous day. What did you have for lunch? What happened at work? Try to remember what you did last weekend. What happened last Christmas?
• Make a list of 10 items and then see if you can remember them without cheating! Part of the memory loss sometimes associated with aging is due to not using our powers of recollection on a regular basis.


7. Watch less television. You’ll be amazed how much better you feel in every way if you watch less TV. You can do so many things to improve your mind and body that you’ll never get around to if you’re watching too much TV. They don’t call it the idiot box for nothing.

Your mental fitness doesn’t have to decline dramatically as you age. The key is to expose yourself to new and challenging experiences on a regular basis. So break up your routine and try something new.

Doing something new that makes you really think is even better. Turn off the TV and work on a crossword puzzle. Take up the guitar. Try a physical activity that’s new to you. There are lots of ways to improve your mental fitness. You can get started today!

Free Yourself from Anxiety

Don’t let anxiety and worry take over your life – it can make you sick and can ruin your life! You have the choice to allow it to or not. There are ways to help yourself overcome this obstacle.

  1. Figure out what is stressing you. Is it something you can change? What is the true source?
  2. Be careful not to put blame on a secondary source when in reality the primary source is causing the stress. (in other words: don’t quit your marriage just because you haven’t dealt with something else that is truly bothering you – this will take some soul searching)
  3. Change: there are plenty of areas you can change in your life without throwing away a lot! Diet, exercise, attitude, volunteer, shop, study a new language and more.
  4. Spend some time on you!

Here are some tips and techniques to help you manage your anxiety:

  • Know your anxieties
  • Write them down
  • Breath
  • Visualize a better situation
  • Positively Affirm yourself: “I am…(insert positive statement that applies)”
  • Diet and exercise: take good care of yourself – it will really take care of you in return (and your worries!)
  • Seek support – if you need help – look for it – talk to someone – look online or in the phone book. Help is only a call away!

Learn by example. Watch and listen to others that have gone through hardships. Read books – you will read about someone that is worse off then you and who made it through. There are many success stories and free programs that will help you realize your strengths and stay away from anxiety.

Anxieties are a part of life but they don’t need to be the foundation of yours. You are strong and smart and you have come a long way – give yourself some credit – you deserve it!

Manage stress well and take the reins – they are yours to take – no one else will do it for you. Good luck – you are on the road to health and wellness and you will be so happy for all the work you do for yourself.